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    30-Somethings Are Sharing What They Wish They'd Known In Their 20s, And Suddenly, My To-Do List Has A Lot More To-Dos

    "Don't worry about being 'behind' other people, whether it's personal goals, career, financial, whatever. Once you're out of school, there is no timeline. Everyone does things at their own pace, and there is no perfect time to do anything. Everyone thinks they are behind in something in some way. So, if everyone thinks they are behind, no one is."

    Have you ever sat back and thought to yourself, Hmmm...I wonder what I could be doing now, in my 20s, to make life easier for myself in my 30s?

    If so, boy, do I have some news for you!!!

    Recently, Reddit user u/maroonlabs7 posed the question "What would you do in your 20s to avoid regret in your 30s?" in r/AskReddit. So, for your reading pleasure, we've compiled all the most informative answers below. EAT UP!

    1. "Always know that change is an option. Many people, myself included, start down a path and think, 'Since I committed to that path, it's the only path for me.' Don't get caught in that thought process. If a choice (career, location, relationship, etc.) doesn't feel right down the road, know you can make a new one. It may be uncomfortable at first, but you can make it through (and likely for the better)."


    A forest with two paths

    2. "If you marry, marry someone because you share a common philosophy on life, have common values, and want to achieve common goals in the future. You shouldn't marry someone just because their ass looks good in jeans."


    A same-sex couple dancing at their wedding and smiling

    3. "Leave other people's business to them. You can totally disagree with every choice they’ve made in the quiet of your own countenance. Let them be and do as they will, just as you would have them do for you."


    4. "If you had braces, wear your retainers."


    Someone removing their Invisalign

    5. "Read, understand, and implement personal finance fundamentals."


    Someone using a calculator

    6. "Don’t chase sex. Don’t force relationships that have no compatibility and chemistry. Don’t invest time, money, and feelings into someone you don’t fully know yet."

    A couple embracing

    7. "SPF. Every day. Don’t neglect your neck and the backs of your hands. It'll protect you from cancer and keep you looking younger! Look for something with UVA and UVB protection as they do different kinds of damage. At least factor 30, but 50 is better!"


    Someone using sunscreen

    8. "I don't care how hot that person is — don't take their shit, and have respect for yourself. Never beg to be liked. Be with someone who likes you instead of transforming yourself into someone they will like, which doesn't work longterm. Don't spend years in toxic relationships, even if there's amazing physical attraction and sex. It's also not your responsibility to save someone. You can help them save themselves, but don't be unhappy in order to make someone else happy."


    9. "Develop healthy habits that you can hold onto. Start very small, and challenge yourself to add something little each week."


    A woman drinking coffee and writing in a notebook

    10. "Travel. Money isn't the constraint. Time is. You might have less opportunity as you get older. Family, job, or health reasons can come up. Do it now."


    A man on a kayak smiling

    11. "Love is a choice, an action, or a state of being. It’s kindness, and it’s sacrifice. Anything else, lust, affirmation, attraction, a desire to be accepted and appreciated by others — all of that isn’t love. By defining it this way, you stop justifying your relationships by transient feelings and pleasures while fortifying yourself to be a strong, capable, and lasting partner for the person you end up with. Love stories make poor role models."


    A couple hugging

    12. "Don’t stress about hitting certain age milestones. The difference between 29 and 30? Not monumental."


    13. "Don’t devote all your time and effort to your career. It is important, as it gives you the means to survive, but it is not what you should devote yourself to. I have spent the last seven years of my life focusing solely on my job. I wish I could go back and focus on living my life and finding out what brings me peace. Doing that now, and couldn’t be happier."


    A woman helping a man at his desk at work

    14. "Be sure to pick friends and partners who build you up, not knock you down."


    A group of guy friends laughing

    15. "Expectations are the death of reality and relationships. The ideal isn’t realistic, and the reality isn’t ideal. If you must judge anything or anyone, do so kindly in a way you needed when you were at your lowest."


    16. "You don’t have to drink alcohol to have a good time."


    People clinking glasses

    17. "Get away from social media as much as possible."


    Someone on social media on their phone

    18. "There is darkness in all of us. Instead of hiding or justifying it, face it down, and be humbled by it. People are people. We can grow from ignorance and advance our society, and our natures remain the same."


    19. “If you’re able, try to be active or work out regularly. That could mean taking walks, swimming, going to a gym, or sticking with some kind of routine as part of your weekly schedule. The older you get, the harder it is to start.”


    A towel, bottle of water, and weight on a gym bench

    20. "Don't worry about being 'behind' other people, whether it's personal goals, career, financial, whatever. Once you're out of school, there is no timeline. Everyone does things at their own pace, and there is no perfect time to do anything. Everyone thinks they are behind in something in some way. So, if everyone thinks they are behind, no one is."


    21. "Take care of your damn teeth. Floss, brush twice a day or more, and get checkups. This year has been over $2,000 worth of dental work (and that's with a huge family discount). I've had cavities filled, a root canal, a crown, rounds of antibiotics and steroids, and so many sleepless nights because of jaw pain. I cannot stress this enough. It's never too early to start taking better care of your teeth."


    A dentist working with a patient

    22. "You will overthink things. Fun things, big things, small things. Relax, take a breath. You don't have to go hard all the time."


    A woman at a table, rubbing her head

    23. "'No' is a complete sentence. Get comfortable and confident with saying no and meaning it."


    24. "I think the best advice is to cherish those you have around you. Grandparents, parents, even friends. Sometimes, you have to say goodbye much earlier than you think. The biggest regret I know a lot of people have is devoting too much time to their job and missing out on the reason they’re working."


    A woman and her grandmother smiling at one another

    25. "You're going to have little situations with friends, family, and coworkers. You're going to feel hurt sometimes. People can be selfish, thoughtless, and rough around the edges. You can, too. Engage your empathy, forgive what can be forgiven, and let go of what can't be fixed. You ask others to understand the circumstances around your behavior, so give them the benefit of the doubt! Carrying a grudge just takes space in a pack that can be filled with much lovelier things!"


    26. And lastly: "You can only control two things: your thoughts and your actions. All the time and anxiety you spend worrying about what other people think or do in your early years is wasted."